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Love and passion for life and hockey



Life is beautiful!

There is so much in life that is beautiful and worth resting upon with the eyes and the mind. Even in the ugliest sight, you can find something that you’d hold as beautiful and focus only on that little spot that is shining with grace.

Perhaps you might think that I am joking (badly) or want to point out things such as the war in Syria, all the 60-70 million refugees around the world, the political situation in the United States and Russia, the mess in the European Union and any other appalling situations in the world as proof that I am wrong.

But, as it seems, no matter the situation, there is always something stunning that will occur which makes our minds change and our perceptions expand in a way that we couldn’t foresee.

I am talking about a moment I had during another task I have besides the hockey writing, but in a way connected to hockey and to the hockey player, I am going to talk about soon, as a part of the life.

Not that I am saying that I’m a holy spirit or a saint, certainly not a Mother Teresa kind of person, but perhaps a good and a happy person who just wishes the best for all people I meet.

Nonetheless, during this task which is connected to helping refugees, I met this little girl some weeks ago, around twelve years old, from Syria.

She had basically nothing. Her parents’ fates were unknown, but most likely they are dead and gone in the sands of Syria.

Yet, in her brown eyes, deep as eternity, there was no sorrow or hate, despite the fact that hateful people have chased her away and killed her parents, just to increase their power and gain more material wealth.

That little Syrian girl smiled and told me that she was so happy to get new friends in the school nearby. As you can understand, in her eyes, there was no sorrow or hate, only love and passion for life despite the grim fate she has been through.

Imagine how the world would be if someone else with a far better material standard, a job, who can afford to go to vacation trips and so on could show same deepness of love and passion as her?

Image courtesy:

Image courtesy:

When I see Sergei Mozyakin in Magnitogorsk, I see the same as I see in that little girl I talked about above. Worth repeat the meaning again here: the love and passion for life (and for hockey).

Mozyakin’s ability to score and find his teammates is as my dear writing colleague, the eminent Patrick Conway said to me, otherworldly, and it is well-documented in the records. He’ll be long-time remembered after he has ended his career on the ice.

New numbers were added during this weekend against SKA St. Petersburg when he scored a hat-trick within five magical minutes. You can see the highlights here:

  • 8th KHL career hat trick (T-1st).
  • 47th goal in one season (1st).
  • 998th career point (1st).

And, we could talk ourselves exhausted about his God-given gift for scoring and his timing when he passes the puck, but I am myself not sure what there is left to say, to be honest.

The thing that tops his ability, the best of all actually, is that a more humble player you have to look for and won’t be sure at all of the findings.

Mozyakin doesn’t talk much but no one – in his surroundings and his silence – can be unaffected by his deep love, the same eternal depth I could see in the little Syrian girl’s brown eyes, for the game and for his way of being there for his teammates when they need him.

Therefore, I feel myself an indescribable amount of gratitude for having met that little girl from Syria who has only love in her eyes and for having seen Mozyakin play during my lifetime, to have taken part in their love and passion, no matter the situation.

So, when I am thinking about these two persons and their incredible way of looking at life (or in Mozyakin’s case, the game of hockey), which makes my mind a lot lighter even if I am a happy person, I am claiming with emphasis that life is beautiful.

I have found that if you love life, life will love you back.

-Albert Rubenstein




Arto Palovaara, Sunday Chronicler for Sports Rants Europe. Previously, he contributed for the betting company Betsafe, Svenska fans, Get real hockey and Ice nation UK. He is also an educated archaeologist and life coach who loves literature and history. Not to forget: probably he is the only sportswriter that plays the banjo.


25th Annual Muhammad Ali Celebrity Fight Night, A Charity Knockout Event



Photo Credit: Monica Alvarez

The stars came out last night to give, show support, perform, and to continue to raise money and awareness in hopes of one day find a cure to knockout Parkinson’s disease.

Going back to year number 1, The first ever event was held at the Ritz-Carlton operated on a much smaller scale than today, which is now held at the JW Marriott Desert Ridge Resort & Spa.

At the very first Celebrity Fight Night With the help of Phoenix Suns Charles Barkley, Dan Majerle, and the valley of the sun’s very own Louie Espinoza, Tony Baltazar, and boxing champion Michael Carbajal who by the way fought in the ring with over sized boxing gloves.

The ”Puttin on the Fists at The Ritz” first Celebrity Fight Night scored a knockout win and is STILL punching on through today for the Greatest Of All Time, The late great Muhammad Ali.

Last night I was honored to attend and speak to a few of the stars, one was NFL legendary kicker Nick Lowery, Mr. Lowery now spends most of his time at charitable endeavors and advocating for alternative medicine research and is also a spokesman for Kannalife, Inc to raise awareness for CTE and players safety in hopes of one day having intercellular “helmets,” like Kannalife’s CBD and KLS-13019, is so important to potentially treat the brain.

I asked Lowery what is his favorite Ali memory, and Lowery’s response: ” Taking Ali to the NBA All-Star game one year as we sat behind Jay-Z and Beyonce and watching Beyonce wave to Ali, Beyonce spoke to us, she is the sweetest person. Also taking Ali to the locker rooms and watching Kobe Bryant, Lebron James, and all the other all stars turn into children at the sight of seeing their hero the greatest of all time Muhammad Ali walk through the doors, what an experience that was.”

In asking the very same question to R&B Singer Brian McKnight, ”I have so many Ali memories but my favorite was watching Ali knockout George Foreman at home with my dad. The odds were against Ali and Ali being the great fighter that he was he beat the odds and stopped a much younger powerful puncher in Foreman. You know, I am still a big boxing fan today, I enjoy watching Tyson Fury out of the current heavyweights.”

And what did legendary former champion boxer, Micheal Carbajal have to say? ”It’s truly an honor to attend this great event, at the very first one proceeds went to my 9th street boxing gym and now 24 years later it’s still going strong, a great charity”. Mr. Carbajal went on to talk some boxing with me,

Carbajal- ” You see Spence/Garcia?”

Me- ” Yes, it was brutal, what did you think?”

Carbajal- ” Not good for Mikey Garcia at all, but he is still my favorite current boxer, and he beats everybody at 135 pounds if he can make the weight there. Mikey would knockout Lomachenko in 4 rounds at 135.”

Me- ”Wow, you really think that? Both are great technical boxers but I can’t see a 4 round fight between them, so you really think it would only take Mikey 4 rounds to stop Lomachenko?”

Carbajal- ” I KNOW so!”

Special honorees for the evening include fabled American music producer and 27-time Grammy Award-winner Quincy Jones, Arizona State University President Dr. Michael Crow and Dr. Abraham Lieberman, the medical director of the Movement Disorders Clinic at Barrow Neurological Institute and Renee Parsons of the Bob & Renee Parsons Foundation.

“For 25 years, we’ve treated Celebrity Fight Night audiences to the world’s greatest entertainers and this year will be no different as we welcome Barry Manilow,” said Jimmy Walker, Founder of Celebrity Fight Night. “With the help of our celebrity friends and incredibly generous donors, we are once again excited to raise millions of dollars and make a difference in the lives of those who need our support.”

Individual tickets for Celebrity Fight Night start at $1,500 – $10,000.  To purchase tickets or to get more information on the event, please visit, or call (602) 956-1121.

About Celebrity Fight Night
Celebrity Fight Night has gifted more than $86 million over the past 24 years benefiting the Muhammad Ali Parkinson Center at Barrow Neurological Institute in Phoenix, as well as several other worthy charities.

The black-tie event features a cocktail reception, silent auction, elegant dinner, and an exciting live auction including one-of-a-kind luxury items and experiences. Celebrity Fight Night Foundation is a nonprofit organization that was founded in 1994 by Jimmy Walker and supports the Barrow Neurological Institute in Phoenix, as well as numerous other charities. For more information,

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Olympic Cyclist Kelly Catlin Dead at 23



Olympic track cyclist Kelly Catlin, who competed in the 2016 Rio Janeiro Games, was found dead in her California home this past Friday due to an apparent suicide, according to an announcement from her father, according to Reuters.

“There isn’t a minute that goes by that we don’t think of her and think of the wonderful life she could have lived,” her father, Mark Catlin said, according to VeloNews. “There isn’t a second in which we wouldn’t freely give our lives in exchange for hers. The hurt is unbelievable.”

Catlin, 23, took the silver medal in Rio and was part of the teams who took home the gold in 2016, 2017, and 2018 World Championships.

Catlin had reportedly struggled with mental health in the past and her sister, Christine Catlin, said that Catlin was “a really special person – kind, funny, empathetic, and talented at literally everything she did, per the Washington Post. She just felt like she couldn’t say no to everything that was asked of her and this was her only escape.”

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Kansas City Chiefs

Tom Brady And Pats Play Record 8th AFC Championship Game, Seek 6th Superbowl



It’s Championship Sunday and one of the NFL staples remain atop the league. The New England Patriots are appearing in their record 8th AFC title game in hopes of competing for a sixth title.

A season that most organizations would be happy with, was one of challenge for the Patriots. Usually a top tier team, they suffered bad losses to the Jaguars, Titans and Dolphins. However, in Patriot fashion along a weak AFC East, the Patriots finished 11-5, won a 10th straight conference title and secured a first round bye.

Kansas City will host New England in the AFC Championship game in what is a rematch from week six. That game featured an offensive clinic ,  As reported by CBS Boston, Brady went 24-35 passing for 340 yards and touchdown in that game; Mahomes went 23-36 passing for 352 yards and four touchdowns. The AFC Championship could very well play out the same way.

The Chiefs will be a tough out, They won their first home playoff game in 25 years last week against the Colts and are riding one of the most prolific offenses in history behind quarterback whisperer Andy Reid and phenome Patrick Mahomes who is arguably the NFLs best young QB.

In what is a David and Goliath matchup, Brady seems to imply they are the underdog. As he told CBS’s Tracy Wolfson, “I know everyone thinks we suck and, you know, cant win games,”.  Will the dynasty continue? Or will Reid and Mahomes hoist the Lombardi?

I’m leaning towards the game plan of Bill Belichick and veteran experience of Tom Brady in this one. I think a Patriot/Saints matchup is in order. Either way, it will undoubtedly be one for the ages.

Game Time: Sunday January 20th at 6:40ET/5:40CT on CBS.

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